Pickled Onions | A Recipe From My Childhood

Pickled onions take me back to my childhood. Enjoy these onions on their own like I do, or as part of a cheese platter. Head straight on to the recipe ♥

Pickled Onions
Pickled Onions

My grandmother had a pantry in her house and in it were all sorts of home made treats. I can remember her old fashioned preserving jars – especially the large one, full of pickled onions. I liked nothing more than taking one out of the jar and eating it, one ‘leaf’ at a time. This has to be an inherited trait as my father would do the same as a child, often with pickled onions, and sometimes just with the raw onions sitting in the bag in that very same pantry. I used to eat raw onions until I met Dave. He totally objects to them in any shape and form. To him, onions must be soft and totally cooked down to nothing before anything else is added to the pan. After 20 years of being together, my palate has changed and I cannot eat raw onions any more. I find the smell quite pungent, and they basically ruin your palate for anything else. So, a few months back I was quite surprised when Dave mentioned he actually liked pickled onions. I have never made them since we started living together and decided I would make a batch for us to enjoy at home. I sent my mother a message asking her for my grandmother’s recipe and it really is so simple. I used white vinegar for mine as that is what I had at home that needed using up. I think they will be much better made with malt vinegar and as soon as Dave and I have worked our way through these very large pickled onions I will make more.

Do you eat raw onions?

Onions About To Be Pickled
Onions About To Be Pickled

Print Recipe
5 from 2 votes

Pickled Onions

This is my grandmother's recipe, made with love by me in my kitchen
Recipe Category: Pickles
All Rights Reserved: an original recipe from Brenda Solomon


  • pickling onions
  • 15 mls coarse salt per 5 onions
  • 500 mls water per 5 onions
  • 1 clove per onion
  • 1 bay leaf per 5 onions
  • 1 peppercorn per onion
  • 15 mls fructose
  • 600 mls vinegar


  • Place the onions into a large glass bowl
  • Sprinkle the salt over the onions
  • Cover with the water
  • Cover with cling film and leave overnight
  • Drain the water off the onions
  • Place the onions into sterilized glass jars
  • Add the cloves, bay leaves and peppercorns
  • Place the fructose into a jug
  • Add the vinegar and stir to dissolve
  • Pour over the onions
  • Seal the jars and place them into a cupboard
  • Leave for at least 4 weeks before opening

Click on the links for conversions and notes.

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21 thoughts on “Pickled Onions | A Recipe From My Childhood

  1. 5 stars
    I didn’t eat pickled onions growing up, but I DID love eating the pickled garlics that were tucked into every jar of homemade pickles. 🙂

  2. Always have pickled onions in the pantry – such a useful addition to any platter. Have a mixed approach to raw onions – will often give them a soak in acid to mellow the flavour..

  3. I have never seen or would have thought to eat/make a pickle with large onions. Very cool and thanks for the idea

  4. It may sounds strange but I love onions! They’re one of my favourite vegetables but they make me cry so much. So as much as I love eating them, I have to be cautious when cutting them up. Hubby is even worse, he has to go outside when I slice up onions!

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